One-on-one & in-depth
You can’t do customer-centred design without engaging customers. It’s in the name, after all! Any business plan, project plan, customer segmentation, or anything else that gets created in the building is a hypothesis. The only way to know if your hypothesis is true or not is to validate it through customer research.
There are no facts inside the building. The facts exist outside the building. Get out of the building.
In his book, The Four Steps to the Epiphany: Successful Strategies for Startups That Win.
Our customer research options
How Might We is proficient in conducting comprehensive customer research, with a team of experienced researchers with diverse backgrounds in psychology, sociology, and design. Our focus is on uncovering deep insights into customer experiences, behaviours, and motivations.
We employ a variety of research methods, tailored to the specific needs of each client. With our experience and expertise, we have helped businesses of all sizes – from startups to corporates – improve their customer experience and satisfaction. We specialise in one-on-one in-depth interviews but are also able to run diary studies and contextual inquiries.
Choosing How Might We means transforming insights into actionable strategies. We don’t just explain customer behaviours – we use our extensive experience in product, service design, and design thinking to convert those behaviours into tangible benefits for your business. This practical, experience-based approach has empowered businesses to enhance customer experiences, secure a competitive edge, and fuel growth.
As one of the top UX research companies in South Africa, our expertise enables our clients to develop products and services that truly resonate with their target audience, ultimately enhancing customer satisfaction, increasing loyalty, and achieving long-term success!
How an in-depth interview project works
Statement of focus
We start with a kick-off session with you to determine what the objective of the research is. We call this the statement of focus. It’s usually in the form of a question, and it’s not something that we can ask customers directly.
For example: “How is mental health spoken about in different family groups?” or “What are the biggest challenges to patients using Telemedicine?”
Finding the right people to interview is vital so we use a team of the best recruiters in South Africa, Europe and the USA. We create a carefully designed screener based on your brief to ensure that respondents meet your target market criteria. We also recruit extra in case there are any last-minute cancellations.
If we are doing remote interviews, we make sure they have access to the internet and have a phone or laptop with a good mic and camera. With remote sessions, we rely heavily on video calls so, before the sessions, we will test their internet and buy them data if needed. We also check when they might have load-shedding and schedule accordingly.
We manage all POPIA requirements and capture content.
Based on what needs to be covered in the statement of focus, we will formulate the best way to gather the findings. Knowing what types of questions to ask and when to ask them comes from a familiarity with research theory and years of experience.
We will share this with you before the test to get your input.
We usually interview 5 respondents a day in 45 minutes to 1-hour sessions. For most once-off customer research we recommend 10-15 participants over 2 to 3 days.
We stream the sessions live, but they are also recorded and available for watching later.
We present the findings of customer research in a 60-80 page report laying out all the themes and insights discovered during the research. We often pair with clips of some sessions featuring the most impactful segments.
Remote or in-person?
In the pre-Covid world, all of our research (including usability testing) was either run at a hired venue or at a client’s offices, provided they had two rooms available and a good internet connection. When the lockdown forced us to conduct our research remotely, we became rather good at it and still prefer it now that the lockdown has lifted.
But sometimes customer research is better in person. We can do this by hiring a research venue, or better still, meet them in their shops, homes, offices, or clinics.
Read more about our view on remote UX research.
Customer research questions
Customer research is a systematic process that involves gathering and analysing first-hand information about a company’s target market, including customer preferences, needs, behaviours, and motivations. The aim of customer research is to gain insights into the factors that influence the actions of potential customers so that businesses can tailor their products and services to meet the needs of their target audience better.
It starts with talking with real customers about thier experiences with a brand and the larger industry. For example, if a business has a financial product, we will talk to customers and potential customers about thier experience with the product, but also about thier larger financial understanding, needs, and concerns.
Where customer research is different to ‘just chatting with customers’ is the way in which the interviews are conducted and the data is processed. We can’t just ask customers what they want. We need to figure out the unmet need by exploring the whole customer landscape, uncovering what currently works and doesn’t work, what areas are missing and what potential desires customers have that they might not know they have.
There are many different techniques in customer research that we use, but all of them are 1-on-1. We prefer these methods over group research, like focus groups. Find out more about our in-depth customer research.
Customer research allows businesses to tailor their customer service offerings to better meet their clients’ needs. By understanding the pain points and challenges that customers face, businesses can develop solutions that address these issues and improve the overall customer experience. Customer service research can also identify areas where businesses can differentiate themselves from their competitors and establish themselves as leaders in their field.
But the most important reason for customer research is that customers are human. They don’t always act logically or in the way a business would like them to, even if customers want what the business is offering. We know that being healthy is better for people, but many people don’t always look after their health in the best way possible. It’s not because people don’t want to be healthier or feel that being healthy is a lie; it’s because of a host of human factors that sway behaviour. Customer research focuses on why customers behave a certain way and what motivates them to ensure that the business iterates thier offering to best serve these human factors.
Focus groups have thier place in market research and can be extremely valuable, but we have found that we gain a far deeper understanding of customers when we interview them individually. This is mainly because of the types of questions we need to answer. We are not asking which design they like more or what thier opinion is on a certain subject. We need to discover the nuances of a customer’s decision-making process and dive deep into potentially sensitive topics that take time to uncover.
We also need a customer’s stories not to be affected by other people’s opinions or even be silenced by someone with a louder personality. For these reasons, we choose to specialise in one-on-one, in-depth UX research sessions.